I've been going to the RESNET conference at the beginning of each year since 2009. I also went in 2004, and I can tell you that it's a great learning and networking opportunity if you're in the home energy industry. Are you on the fence about coming to the RESNET conference this year? Are you not on the fence but just haven't registered yet? Even if neither of those apply, see…Continue
Added by Allison A. Bailes III on January 25, 2013 at 12:22pm — No Comments
The International Energy Conservation Code (IECC 2009 and 2012) requires HVAC ducts to be tested to prove a minimum leakage. While many states and localities will adopt this code outright, it is likely that many will also amend it to allow inspection and sealing alternatives. Many HVAC contractors are bound to breathe a sigh of relief at not having to face potential failure and the subsequent looking for the 'leak in the trunk line' that will eat up their profit margins by the…Continue
When people consider high performance homes the term “label” gets used most broadly – in both a positive or negative context. In general, when people talk about…Continue
Whether driven by a genuine desire to reduce their environmental footprint, or simply to insulate themselves against rising costs, energy efficiency is becoming a significant organizational goal for many companies around the country. In order to achieve these goals, businesses are looking for direction on how they can have their buildings’ designed and/or operated to consume as little energy as possible. Many have looked to the LEED Rating System to provide both the guidance for,…Continue
For a technician or auditor that works outside of the Oil Heating Industry, seeing a tank leaking in a basement can send you into a moment of shock. Then of course, the dreaded conversation with the Homeowner will cast a cloud. The key is to have a plan, and know what to do. The smallest amount of knowledge in this subject could make you the hero. Simply stating, "Call your Oil Company!" can leave them feeling helpless. Of course, that oil delivery company must know about a leaking…Continue
A building is not sacred. A church or a temple, no matter how old, or big, or beautiful, by itself is not sacred. It’s the attitude of the people and the things that people do in a building that make it sacred or not. I have met many people in the home performance field who quietly go about the work of…Continue
Added by Jim Gunshinan on January 11, 2013 at 4:00pm — No Comments
Reposted from i.e., the Center for Energy and Environment's Innovation Exchange blog -- http://mncee.org/Innovation-Exchange/ie/…Continue
Added by Lester Shen on January 8, 2013 at 8:21am — No Comments
After writing last week's post: "High CO Reading, Now What?" it occurred to me that not as many people out there: technicians, raters, or auditors; are up to speed on the age old firing rate calculation. I hope this simple procedure is easily understood as you may find it useful if you are working with negative pressure gas valves, with Energy Star Homes, or just simply forgot your manometer at the shop. I…Continue
Energy benchmarking can unlock $9 billion in energy savings by 2020, suggests a recent report by the Institute of Market Transformation. Despite our lofty aspirations of energy independence and tackling global climate change, we are only beginning to implement the first step in the multifamily building sector – understanding our energy use. Multifamily housing has a number of characteristics that should make green retrofits an appealing investment, but only a fraction of the…Continue
The Appraisal Institute’s An Introduction to Green Homes is yet another valuable tool from the Institute, paving the way for appraisers to handle green home assignments. The book, authored by long-time appraiser, REALTOR, and educator Alan Simmons in 2010 helps appraisers new to this work “know what they don’t know.” The book equips appraisers to identify green building certifications, techniques,…Continue
Added by Home Energy Magazine on January 9, 2013 at 10:11am — No Comments
"Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing...after they have exhausted all other possibilities." Winston Churchill
How much does it cost to perform a deep-energy retrofit at a 100-year-old single-family home? Thanks to a recent study in Utica, New York, we now know the answer: about $100,000.…Continue
We all have stories about losing power in our home for several hours—or days—and many people suspect that power interruptions are becoming more frequent. They may be right; unfortunately, the utility data are so sketchy that nobody can say for certain. But declining investment in maintenance on the part of utilities, plus the increased frequency of extreme weather caused by climate change, are almost certain to keep the blackouts coming.
One response is to buy a home generator. That’s…Continue
From the great region of the country that gave us rock, blues, country, dubstep, and Tejano music origins, not to mention the space program, horns mounted on pickup trucks, and Gilley's (everywhere, now) comes the newest invention and innovation, the …Continue
This seems to be one of the unluckiest weeks to draw in the on-call pool for a technician. You see, over the Winter you have to respond to no-heat calls much faster than a residence without cooling on Memorial or Independence Day. I remember visiting homes many Festivus evenings and getting the old clunker of a boiler running, without the swears from "A Christmas Story". But, even over the last fifteen years, being on-call has changed. If you were not able to barter your way out of…Continue
Tankless- expensive, high maintenance, high failure rates, high install costs, limited flow rates, poor winter performance, long payback.
Hybrid Electric- too tall, need surrounding space for heat exchange, poor durability, noisy, may need condensate pump.
Solar- requires southern exposure, cold & cloudy days: poor performance, very long payback, high install costs
The good old Storage Tank water heater- electric is OK, fast…Continue
As I recently reviewed in my “Storytelling from BECC” blog, media provides a huge opportunity for the home performance industry to make it into the mainstream. That’s why I was pleased to see recently that HGTV’s show “Property Brothers” was dolling out advice that I’ve heard more than once at industry conferences.
For those of you unfamiliar, the “Property Brothers,” also known as Drew and Jonathan…Continue
Added by Macie Melendez on December 18, 2012 at 1:15pm — No Comments
The insurance industry, the world's largest business with $4.6 trillion in revenues, is making larger efforts to manage climate change-related risks, according to a new study published today in the journal Science.
"Weather- and climate-related insurance losses today average $50 billion a year. These losses have more than doubled each decade since the 1980s, adjusted for inflation," says the study's author Evan Mills, a scientist in Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory…Continue
Added by Home Energy Magazine on December 18, 2012 at 12:58pm — No Comments
Promises of savings without tracking DRIVES ME NUTS. People are being harmed and we don't have any idea how big the harm is. Comprehensive Home Performance really takes off once you connect tracking results because now you can offer a thing very rare.
You can offer TRUTH. You can offer PROOF that what you say will happen, will happen. Delivering the "5th
How do we create pressure for Utilities to open up their data so tracking can be automated?…Continue
GUILTY! Once upon a time, I would have scoffed at mechanical engineers and contractors if they'd ask me, as the design architect, for a bigger room to put the HVAC (heating and air conditioning) equipment in.
"Are you crazy? And give up valuable storage space???"
They might have also ask me for dropped soffits and vertical chases to run the ductwork through. To which I would reply:
"What?!?! That's not consistent with my innovative and beautiful design! The…Continue